It seems like every day during my discussions with friends, family, customers, partners, and strangers someone is always saying to me, “You should also reach out to INSERT RANDOM SPORT/ACTIVITY HERE users. They would love and need your products.” It’s one of the advantages of having products with unlimited applications and benefits like we do at Qore Performance, we’re able to ebb and flow with the demand of new opportunities.
A while back, my friend Jake first told me this same thing as it related to hunters. He went on at length about how he was using our products to stay warm in his tree stand during a harsh Virginia winter, and how hunters are the perfect users because of the different elements and the amount of gear required just for a single day of hunting. An entire deer season came and went. A spring turkey season flew by as well, and before I knew it, we were smack dab in the middle of the 2014/15 deer season. Every time I saw Jake he told me about how he had used our gear to stay warm, or how the cooling inserts were perfect because it allowed him to hike into the woods with less gear, which prevented him from sweating and giving off a scent for the deer to locate him. I was intrigued more than ever.
This past February we decided to take the plunge into the world of hunting, and as luck would have it The Great American Outdoor Show was set to begin in Pennsylvania in just a few days. I reached out to select outfitters that were exhibiting at the Show and setup tentative meetings to display our products, get some feedback, and see if hunting was truly the right fit for our products. Upon arrival at the GAO Show, I was blown away. It was Wednesday morning, 11am, the show had been ongoing since Saturday, and I found the arena packed with thousands of people. Speaking with these outfitters wasn’t going to be easy. After a few successful discussions with different outfitters, I came to meet Mark Clifford from Premier Outfitters in Western Kentucky. Mark was impressed immediately, and so was I.
Over the next month Mark and I spoke regularly. He sent me a video testimonial of himself wearing our gear on a cold, snowy day in South Carolina, and was amazed at the benefits he was experiencing (Video:https://youtu.be/osvEqWljbI8). Mark and I setup a time to meet in early April at his main lodge in Gracey, KY, and so it became that Qore Performance was officially in the business of helping hunters.
This past weekend I visited Mark and his staff at Premier Outfitters, and I was amazed at what I saw. Every member of Mark’s team was using Qore Performance gear on the farm. The guides who were tending to the fields and feeding the deer were using our gear to work more efficiently, staying cooler and more hydrated on a day that eclipsed 80 degrees.
Saturday morning brought in fog, wind, and temperatures in the low 50’s. The team at Premier Outfitters had a special turkey hunt scheduled that morning, so the hunters were bundled up, and ready to go. We met up with them around noon after an unsuccessful morning hunt, and they were clearly uncomfortable. The sun had come out, temps were once again above 80 degrees, and they were geared up for the cold. A perfect opportunity to test out our Qore Performance gear. Mark provided a Half Sleeve to each hunter and once they added the cooling insert, relief set in. After only 2 minutes Eric, the head guide, commented to me, “I can feel my whole body cooling down. This is crazy.” Adam, a guest, broke into a Dumb and Dumber quote with, “Harry, I’m freezing.”
Over the next thirty minutes they ate, regrouped, and Eric began a set of turkey calls. Within minutes, gobblers were heard, and the team was gearing up to go back out. As Mark and I were packing up to get me back to the airport, we heard a call from the guys, “Can we get a fresh insert for the hunt, these things are amazing.” I was like a proud poppa. We geared them up, and off they went.
As I headed for my return to DC, I couldn’t help but smile. We are helping hunters stay warm in the winter, get cool in the spring and summer, and pack less gear for their hunts, something Jake described precisely to me over a year ago. Finally, walking to the terminal I received the following picture, along with an inside joke, from Mark. Again, Qore Performance is officially in the business of helping hunters control their climate to maximize their hunts.